After storms delayed the beginning of the match for approximately 90 minutes, the Commodores finally took to the Henry Field Courts about 4:30 p.m. ET and lost the doubles point for the third consecutive day. The result seemed to be playing into VU's recent strength in Athens, as prior to today, the Commodores were only 1-4 in doubles play, but 8-0 in singles during wins over #24 Tennessee and #5 Georgia.
Juniors Annie Menees and Audra Falk, rated #39 in the country, were the first off the doubles court as the pair suffered an 8-3 setback to the Stanford duo of Amber Liu and Alice Barnes. Meanwhile, the titanic struggle on court one between the nation's #1-ranked pairing from SU, Lauren Barnikow and Erin Burdette, and the #2 squad, Vanderbilt's Aleke Tsoubanos and Kelly Schmandt, went the Cardinal's way by an 8-2 count to clinch the doubles point for Stanford. Sophomore Ashley Schellhas and freshman Amanda Fish were deadlocked with SU's 56th-ranked pairing of Emilia Anderson and Anne Yelsey at 6-6 when their match was suspended.
Coming into today's match with an impressive 14-1 singles record during the NCAA Tournament, Vanderbilt hoped to continue their NCAA singles magic against the Cardinal. However, SU picked up three straight-set victories to close out the 4-0 match.
Stanford's Theresa Logar (#40) clinched the Cardinal's second point by defeating VU sophomore Ashley Schellhas 6-2, 6-2 at the number five position. Meanwhile, on court four, SU's Lauren Barnikow (#56) bested Vanderbilt's Amanda Fish, 6-4, 6-2, to set the score at Stanford 3, Vanderbilt 0.
This wasn't your typical 4-0 match by any means. The Commodores were battling hard on courts one, three and six. Unfortunately, those three matches were suspended following Alice Barnes' 6-2, 6-2 victory over Kelly Schmandt at number two singles.
Junior Audra Falk led the nation's #7-ranked singles player, Stanford's Amber Liu, 6-4, 4-5 at the number one slot, senior Aleke Tsoubanos held a 6-2, 4-5 advantage over #23-ranked Erin Burdette at three singles and junior Annie Menees was up 6-4, 3-2 over 60th-rated Emilia Anderson when their matches were suspended.
The 26 wins for Vanderbilt are the second most in program history, just one off the 27 victories posted by the 2001-02 Commodore squad, while the four losses are the fewest for VU in a single campaign all-time. The Black and Gold have been to the NCAA Tournament on 10 occasions and now have two NCAA Final Four appearances on their program's resume.
Vanderbilt Results Doubles 1. Lauren Barnikow and Erin Burdette-1 (SU) d. Aleke Tsoubanos and Kelly Schmandt-2 (VU), 8-2* 2. Amber Liu and Alice Barnes (SU) d. Audra Falk and Annie Menees-39 (VU), 8-3 3. Emilia Anderson and Anne Yelsey-56 (SU) vs. Ashley Schellhas and Amanda Fish (VU), 6-6, DNF Order of Finish: 2, 1 *Clinched doubles point Singles 1. Amber Liu-7 (SU) vs. Audra Falk-13 (VU), 4-6, 5-4, DNF 2. Alice Barnes-10 (SU) d. Kelly Schmandt-61 (VU), 6-2, 6-2** 3. Erin Burdette-23 (SU) vs. Aleke Tsoubanos-120 (VU), 2-6, 5-4, DNF 4. Lauren Barnikow-56 (SU) d. Amanda Fish (VU), 6-4, 6-2 5. Theresa Logar-40 (SU) d. Ashley Schellhas (VU), 6-2, 6-2 6. Emilia Anderson-60 (SU) vs. Annie Menees (VU), 4-6, 2-3, DNF Order of Finish: 5, 4, 2 **clinched match